Doug McAllister

Doug McAllister of Douglas Automotive in Barrington writes a weekly Under the Hood column.

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items 1-10 out of 123

Like oil, different fluids can also get dirty

Mar 08 2015 | 9:56 am - After my last column on transmission fluid, one of our readers thought it would be good if I wrote about some of the other fluids that need to be changed on a car. So today I will focus on driveline fluids.

Many engine replacements are avoidable

Mar 06 2015 | 12:46 pm - Why am I seeing so many blown engines and transmissions in the shop recently? Over the last two weeks we have had to replace several engines, transmissions and differentials.

Vehicle continually burns out headlamps

Jan 04 2015 | 9:50 am - Q. My daughter has a 2011 Subaru Legacy with 140,000 miles. It goes through headlight bulbs at the rate of about one a month, left or right. She has gone to various shops to get them replaced, including the dealer, but no one seems to have any ideas...

Reader has suggestion for steering problem

Nov 17 2014 | 6:44 am - Here is a follow-up from one of our readers regarding the steering problem on an Astro van, which I wrote about several weeks back. He suggests a fluid change for the all-wheel drive steering system.

Spare tire needs attention, too

Oct 05 2014 | 9:27 am - Q. When I have the tires on my car rotated and balanced, I never think about the tire in the trunk. Other than making sure it is inflated to the correct pressure, should I have it looked at for signs of deterioration?

Fine scratches can be masked by polishing windshield

Sep 26 2014 | 1:33 pm - Q. I have a lot of little scratches on my windshield. Is there anything that I can put on the windshield to make the scratches go away?

Brakes ‘thump’ when backing out of garage

Aug 08 2014 | 4:00 pm - Q. I recently had my rear brakes changed on 2002 Toyota Camry XLE. When I back up every morning, they make “stump, thump, thump” sound.

Car owner frustrated with string of alternators

Aug 01 2014 | 2:52 pm - Q. I have a 1992 Toyota Corolla with 105,000 miles on it. The concern I have is that I have replaced the alternator three times with an aftermarket alternator in the last 5 years.

Mice can do significant damage to autos

Jul 25 2014 | 12:49 pm - We have seen several cars brought into the shop this year with rodent damage. I don’t know if this is because of the extremely long and cold winter we experienced here in the Chicago area but, whatever the reason, we have seen more of this...

No harm in changing fluids early

Jul 03 2014 | 3:01 pm - Q. My dealer recomends I change my transmission fluid and coolant. I checked the maintenance schedule in the owner’s manual, which states these items don’t need attention with 34,000 miles. The dealer says the owner’s manual is...

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