WTYM: Motor Medics Answer Your Automotive Questions

 

The Motor Medics will be answering your automotive questions Saturdays from 10AM until Noon on WTYM AM 1380 & FM 103.7

 

Dear Motor Medics,
I purchased a 2007 Honda Odyssey van with 40,000 miles and I thought I got a great deal. The used vehicle inspection only had one suggestion, new tires. I took the van to a tire store and they quoted me 2000.00 to replace the tires and I thought I was going to die on the spot. I thought they were out of line when they said I had special PAX tires, so I left the store and was told the same at another. What is this PAX thing and who would ever be willing to pay so much for minivan tires? Can I get rid of them and install regular tires?
Fred in McCook Nebraska

Dear Fred,
Surprise! It feels like they should yell this when you go to get these replaced. Yes they’re expensive but they are very different from other tires and that’s why they are. These tires were installed on some 05-09 Honda Odyssey, 06-08 Nissan Quest, 06-08 Acura RL, and 05-09 Toyota Sienna vans and some others. The tire is a run flat design allowing you to travel with no air for a limited time. They require special equipment to repair or replace and not every tire store has the equipment. To change to a regular tire requires changing the wheel as well making it very expensive. Either way it will be a jolt to the wallet. Check the internet for more information and options on these tires.
Take care, the Motor Medics

Dear Motor Medics,
I have a very bad smell when I turn on the blower in my car. It smells like a dirty refrigerator. I must run the system for a few minutes with the windows down before I can stand to sit in the car. This started last year and has progressively become worse. It does not matter if it is set to heat or Air Conditioning. What could this be and how can I get rid of the smell?
Terry in Enid Oklahoma

Dear Terry,
The smell you have is likely exactly what you are describing, the smell of a dirty refrigerator. As you drive with the A/C on water forms on the evaporator inside of the air box and when it is saturated runs out of the box through a tube. You can see this water condensation running on the ground if everything is working correctly. If you don’t’ or have wet carpet you need to have the tube cleaned. When you shut the vehicle off the water can start to mildew like a refrigerator and start to smell. Some vehicles get so bad that they need to be cleaned professionally with a system that introduces an antibacterial cleaner into the intake of the system to clean it up. Check with your local shop to see if they can check the system for proper drainage and if they recommend performing this service to take care of the smell issue you have.
Take care, the Motor Medics