"Brake Pad Light" ('07 BMW 328)
The sensor has been exposed, setting the light. Note that fully half the brake pad remains. That would be to...er.... ah.... maximize.. the..um... heat dissipation. Yeah, that's the ticket.

"Intermittent Oil Pressure Light" ('05 Mini 51k Mi.)
A mis-routed wire has rubbed against a sharp heat shield edge. Under acceleration the wire would ground, giving the false reading. The repair involved protecting and rerouting the wire. The Dealer wanted $500.00 to do this job.

"What You Need" ('95 MB SL 500)
Strut mount rubber has aged, is cracked, and should be replaced. (The large metal clamp keeps the strut from puncturing the hood when the mount fails completely.) 'What You Need' is the title of Episode 12 of 'The Twilight Zone' aired Dec 25, 1959.

96 Volvo 850 Belt
"Serpentine" (accessory) belt is no longer groovy, but well earned, since his age is 229,000. Click to enlarge the picture.

"Check Engine light" ('02 Audi A4)
Diagnostic computer says "Cam Sensor" (see 'Check Engine Light' below) The old sensor (on right) conveniently turns brown when it fails.

"Check Engine Light" ('96 BMW)
Our computer reports "Faulty Cam Sensor." It is the black cylinder in the center of the photo. It monitors the position of the gray rotor attached to the intake camshaft. Knowing cam position, the computer can vary valve timing to maximizes power and mileage while minimizing emissions. (Photo illustrates location. Sensor is replaced easily without this extent of disassembly)

"ABS light" (Flood damaged 02 BMW 325)
This is the valve body that apportions brake pressure to the four wheels. When ABS fails, it is usually the delicate electonic control module, not the robust valving. But having been submerged, this entire unit must be replaced. $2,400.00

'My brakes are weak'
The lower rotor was actually on the car! The worst we have ever seen. For comparison, the Left rotor is new and the Right one is normal wear (note the lip on the edge).

'My ABS light is on'
The hydraulic pump and valving (right) are ok. The Control box (left) contains the solenoids which move the hydraulic valve stems and is the culprit in this case (Volvo). Dealers of course replace the whole unit. Including the expensive pump.

'My alternator light is on'
One cause: Voltage regulator (nowdays within the alternator) brushes are worn away. Note the dull one is not making contact with the 'commentator' (commutator). Dealers will not replace or rebuild this unit, but replace the entire alternator. Newer alternators MUST be replaced. Clever.

'I think the water pump is smoking' (99 Audi)
Water pump bearing seized, cooking the belt (which smoked), and the idlers. Note pump shaft is cockeyed. The owner saved the engine, because he stopped the car when it overheated.

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