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Maintenance Hacks

Name Description
Replacing Spare Tire JackAnyone who's had to use their spare tire jack knows how much of a pain in the butt it is to get everything to fit correctly again. Here's some help!
Replacing front disc brake rotors and padsChanging your brakes is not only necessary as part of your car's regular maintenance, but it's also easier than most people think. We'll cover changing the pads and the rotors on the front of the car.
Oil ChangeChanging your own oil is cheaper and often times faster than taking it in to a shop to have it done. Here's how to do it!
Rear Brake Squeal Fix (Lubricating Rear Brakes)The Focus' rear drum brakes have a nasty habit of squealing. This isn't a problem with just the Focus, but many vehicles. Noresull has the answer to help you fix the squeaky brakes yourself!
Adjusting Shifter Linkage without the special toolSometimes, the 5-speed shifter linkage cables get misaligned or come loose. There's a special alignment tool to help you fix it, but we don't believe in special tools. thanks to Noresull, we have a way to fix it!
Cooling System Drain, Refill, and BleedingInstructions for draining, refilling and bleeding your cooling system (Radiator, Resevoir, coolant hoses)
Replacing the thermostat and/or thermostat housingThe thermostat housing (also called the water outlet) has a nasty habit of cracking internally and letting water flow past the gasket. The thermostat is also a commonly replaced part. Here's how to replace them.
Testing your thermostatHow to test the temperature at which your thermostat will open and close. This can determine if your thermostat is bad or not.
PCV Valve replacement (Zetec engine, maybe others)Replacing the PCV Valve is part of the regular maintenance of the car, like rotating tires or changing the oil. It's cheap, and not too difficult once you know how to do it. I recommend doing it every 10,000 - 20,000 miles.
Replacing Accessory Belt (Zetec)Accessory belts wear out, but they're inexpensive and easy to replace.
Cleaning the Mass Air Flow Sensor (MAFS)The MAF Sensor can get fouled with atomized oil from the breather tube, and other particles that are small enough to get through the air filter. It can often be cleaned instead of replaced, if you do it carefully. Here's how!
Zetec Valve Cover Gasket ReplacementAs our Zetec engines get up there in miles and age, the valve cover gasket loses its elasicity and turns into a harder, brittle plastic type compound. Particularly when used with thinner oils and syntetics, a worn valve cover gasket can cause pretty alarming oil leaks. Fortunately, it's an easy fix that we can show you here!
Air Conditioner re-fill and serviceIt's going to be summer soon, and in many parts of the world, things are going to be heating up. Make sure your A/C is running at its best. If the AC isn't quite as cool as it used to be, the solution might be as simple as recharging the system. You can do it without even getting under the car or popping the hood!
Accessory belt replacementWhen your accessory (serpentine) belt wears out, you'll need to replace it. This is a standard maintenance item that requires periodic replacement. Frayed spots on the flat side as well as cracks, missing chunks or slick shiny parts on the grooved side are signs that it's probably time for a new belt.
Replacing rear drum brake shoesIf your parking brake is no longer working too well, or you notice your car is no longer stopping as fast as it used to, your rear brakes could be shot without you even knowing it. Here's how to fix them!
Headlight bulb replacementReplacing the headlight bulbs on a 1st generation Ford Focus is one of the more confusing regular maintenance tasks. This video will help you!