Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Fixing Loose Kitchen Taps

Fixing Loose Kitchen Taps - Intro

If you have loose kitchen taps then you can follow the below instructions to tighten them up. Obviously anyone can tighten up a nut, but under a sink the nut is often hard to get too / hard to reach. But with a few tools you can do it you self.

A nut too far.

Fixing Loose Kitchen Taps - Tools

You will need:

  1. Ordinary / Plain Screwdriver (Flat Head)
  2. Hacksaw
  3. Pliers or Vice
  4. Socket set (11mm socket - may vary).

Fixing Loose Kitchen Taps - Method

Snug up up brass nut using your fingers, this should be possible in all but the tightest spots. Also check that the threaded  bar, is snugged up. When the nut and the bar are finger tight, remove thme together by unscrewing the threaded bar from the base of the tap, DO NOT LET THE BRASS NUT MOVE.

ordinary screwdriver slot at base of thread

Once you have removed the bar and the nut you will be looking like something in the diagram below.

As you can see there is a lot of spare threaded bar sticking out which stops you getting a socket on the nut. We need to reduce the amount of bar that protrudes.

Measure the thread that was poking out on the upper end of the bar (say 42mm in my case). Move the nut down the bar until it is flush / parralel with the end that has the screwdriver slots. Then cut the threaded bar so you get back to your original measurement (mine was 42mm).

You can now use a scredriver to screw the threaded bar back in to the base of the tap until tight, and then tighten the nut using a standard socket set.

The nut is brass so you will have to be a bit carefull not to overtighten.

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Monday, 28 October 2013

Checking for Correct Drivers

Checking for Correct Drivers - Intro 

Sometimes a piece of hardware on you PC might start to misbehave, or perhaps it doesn't work properly from the outset. A common cuase is incorrect drivers. A driver is a small piece of software that help you operating system undetsand what a particular bit of hardware does.

Checking for Correct Drivers - Download Fresh Drivers

Before you start the reintsall process check that you have the correct drivers to hand. For example for a graphics card made by nvidia or perhaps ATI vists there website and download a fresh set of drivers. You then have 2 options.

Find out which drivers to download can be tricky and you may need to open up you PC case, which is fine if done carefully, and write down the part number on your hardware. 

SO above we have a graphics card and you can find out which driver you will need by do a google search for part number.

So if I search for 180-10283-A02 on google it will tell be that the video / graphics card is an NVS 285, so type "NVS 285 driver" back in to google and you should have some good results.


You now have 2 options.

Option 1 - Run Intstaller

In the file you dowenloaded there may be am install file, this may install the driver for you (just follow the on screen prompts). or

Option 1 - Install Maunaully

Sometimes the drivers will not be installed and just "unzipped" to a director somewhere on your PC. In this instance you will have to make note of where there are stored durung the unzipping process.

For example when you unzip drivers sourced from the HP website, the are normally stored in a folder called "SWSETUP" found in the root of the "C" drive (My Computer > C:).

So once you have figured out where the drivers have been stored open device manager.

(Start > Control Panel> Device Manager)

Right click on the hardware you are having trouble with (it may have a yellow question mark next to it), and choose update driver software. Some people say uou should unistall the drivers before updating.

Choose browse computer, and then navigate to the folder where the drivers were unzipped to.

Then click next. 

One of twop thing will happen, either you will see so animated incons saying install is happening, and you will have to restart computer (perhaps), or you will see a message saying that you drivers are already OK. If it is the later then perhaps somthing else is the matter and not your drivers.

Sunday, 27 October 2013

P0299 Fault Code on Audi A4 1.9 TDI BRB Engine

P0299 Fault Code on Audi A4 1.9 TDI BRB Engine  - Intro

Our Audi A4 1.9 TDI  suffered an obvious loss of boost and the engine light showing. I plugged in the OBD scanner and it flagged up a P0299 fault code described as "turbo booster under boost".

So armed with this code I went on various forums here and there to see what I could find out. However, I should have opened up the bonnet first, as the problem would have been immediatly obvious. THIS MAY HAVE ULTIMATLY BEEN DUE TO A WORN CAM SHAFT.

P0299 Fault Code on Audi A4 1.9 TDI BRB Engine  - Forums and Other Sources

1 - Apparently a common cuase for this code is a faulty pressure convertor valve.

"I would look at the Pressure Converter Valve (N75) located above the brake booster. It controls vacuum to the turbo. The part number is 1K0906627A. Here is a link to a picture of it http://www.idparts.com/catalog/produ...oducts_id=1251 . Hope that helps you out, mine was doing the same thing - no boost, no cruise control, and same code."

2 - The BRB engine has a variable geometry turbo, with bits that move inside, these moving bits are pulled / pushed by an actuator.

"Check your boost actuator with a vacuum pump from the autopart store. Autozone sells one that will be perfect for what you are testing. I guess I should do the test just to rule it out but I don't see how that could possibly be the problem given the fact that when it goes into "wimp mode" (that’s what I call it cuz it's not "Limp Mode") all I have to do is unplug the MAF sensor and Whaaalaaaa, got all my power back. The boost actuator is a mechanical device that I don’t believe can be fixed by unplugging the MAF. Please correct me if I’m wrong."

 3 - If the Actuator is the problem, then you will need to figure out which brand you have, actuators can only be sourced from specialist companies and not from your average parts place, they may require that you make a custom brcket for them to fit!

Borg/warner turbo rod extends with applied vacume.

Garret Turbo rod retracts with applied vacume.

Actuator type blck box = electronic – silver and round = mechanical.
P0299 Fault Code on Audi A4 1.9 TDI BRB Engine  - Actual Problem in my Case

There is an exhauist gas pipe that comes out of the EGR cooler, and upon opening the bonnet it was immediatly obvious that this had broken (stress fracture) and there was soot every where. The host gases had also melted a hole in the plastic engine cover.

It is unclear as to why this pipe has failed and one reason is :

"Good call Tom_B...EGR cooler was loose. The engine is doing some serious vibrating and some of the bolts had been damaged from the vibration so they replaced the mid and the rear bolts. I hadn't opened the hood with the engine running in a while and I was surprised by how much vibration was going on in there. I guess I got accustomed to it."

SO check that.

I found a loose bolt on the EGR cooler essembly, see below, so I teightened that and had the EGR pipe welded up by a local fabricator. I will post back in a few months and tell how things are going. There are other bolts that should be checked for tightness, but they are hard to get to.