John Baker

Recent Posts by John Baker

Why Does My Car’s Engine Burn Oil?

The simple answer: It’s probably wearing out. Over time, the piston rings have likely become worn or stuck in their grooves, preventing them from sealing tightly against the cylinder wall.



Solving the Challenges of Flat-Tappet Cams in Classic Car Engines

1959 Chevy Impala

One of the big concerns among classic car owners in recent years has been the abundance of flat-tappet camshaft failures many attribute to the reduction of zinc and phosphorus in today’s oil formulations.



What to Know When Choosing Shock Oil

A shock oil’s number-one task is to deliver consistency. Consistent dampening despite temperature changes. Consistent rebound despite different terrain. Consistent performance so you can ride or drive confidently.



How Do I Switch from Conventional to Synthetic Oil?

To borrow a famous slogan, just do it. There is still some confusion about changing to a different type of oil in vehicles, particularly older models that have accumulated many miles. A small group of ill-informed individuals in garages and on blogs still cling to old beliefs that synthetic motor oils cause roller followers to

Read More



Do Motor Oil Additives Work?

What do motor oil additives do? The shelves at your local auto parts store are full of aftermarket motor oil additives and oil treatments that promise a cornucopia of benefits, such as… Increased fuel economy Reduced friction Maximum horsepower Improved engine cleanliness To provide this added performance, aftermarket motor oil additives use different chemical components

Read More



How a Differential Works (and the Type of Gear Lube to Use)

Think of all the devices we take for granted that improve our lives. The refrigerator. The microprocessor. The air conditioner. The spork.



What’s the Difference Between DOT 3 and DOT 4 Brake Fluid?

The primary difference between the two is their respective boiling points. I suspect I know your next question. But first, some background. The U.S. Department of Transportation classifies brake fluid into four main categories:



Help Revive a Lawn Mower (and other equipment) that Runs Rough

Summer lawn mower maintenance tips

Judging someone’s character can be boiled down to this key question: do they love going to the dump?



Are all Synthetic Oil Groups the Same? Group III vs IV vs V

The simple answer No. In fact, there are wide performance differences between base oil categories. Generally speaking, Group IV base oils offer the best performance, Group III second best, and so on in reverse order. But be forewarned – there are exceptions. And, you can’t judge motor oil performance solely on base oil type.



What Happens if I Use the Wrong Weight (Viscosity) of Oil?

It depends on how your engine is built and how it reacts to the specific viscosity of oil you use. That’s pretty nebulous, so here are some examples.