Getting to the core of the problem

We had a car dropped off last week with a coolant leak on the inside of the passenger footwell. Typically when we see coolant leaking into this area, it’s coming from the heater core. Sure enough, that’s what happened in this case, so we replaced the heating core.

That prompted me to write this month’s column on the heater system (I discussed air conditioning last month), even though fall hasn’t arrived just yet. The heater system isn’t as complicated as the air-conditioning system, but they share some common components.

Ending on a high note

Mike Hagerty/Special to the Town Crier
The 2019 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible 2.0T Final Edition SEL features a turbocharged engine with 174 horsepower. VW recently announced it’s ending production of the Beetle.

You probably saw articles and videos earlier this summer with headlines like “Volkswagen Beetle ends production after 70 years.” I hate to be a buzzkill, but I hate hype and inaccuracy more, so indulge me a moment, please.

The Volkswagen Beetle that started production 70 years ago ended production 40 years ago. There was a big farewell for that one, too – in 1979. And the triple-white Final Edition convertibles are still on the street in a lot of Peninsula cities.

New Maserati is fierce

Mike Hagerty/Special to the Town Crier
The Maserati Levante S GranSport has a top speed of 187 mph.


Joe Walsh sang, “My Maserati does 185/I lost my license/Now I don’t drive” in his 1978 hit “Life’s Been Good.”

Is it legal to ride a bicycle on the sidewalk in California? It depends

Chris Hoeber/Special to the Town Crier
This sign in downtown Mountain View warns people not to ride bicycles on the sidewalk.

I have been asked several times if it is legal to ride a bicycle on the sidewalk in California. Everyone I talked with thought they knew the answer, and everyone’s answer was different.

The art of staying cool

I really appreciate having air conditioning in my car and in my house – especially after the extremely high temperatures in late July.

We work on air-conditioning systems year-round, but the work picks up in the summertime. I have always found air conditioning to be interesting for one fundamental reason: All refrigerant systems follow the same basic principles. From cars to homes to refrigerators, they all work the same basic way. My background in automotive A/C helped me solve a problem in my house.

Getting a charge out of new Hyundai Ioniq

Courtesy of Hyundai
The new Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid gets 52 mpg (city/highway combined).

Look around you in traffic. On the Peninsula, I guarantee that you can hold your breath until you see an electric car and pretty much not interrupt normal breathing. Being an area full of highly educated people, early adopters and just up the street from where they make Teslas stacks the odds a bit.

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