Tales from Ruppert’s garage

Volkswagen Golf, mileage – 74,245: My daughter called me to say that the nearside front wheel of her Golf was intermittently making a graunching noise. I imagined it could be related to the wheel bearing – or one of the local pheasants had got trapped in there. She arrived and it was indeed a weird noise. There was a downpour but it couldn’t wait, so I jacked up the front and took off the wheel. I noticed that the sill cover was bent, which related to a story a couple of years ago when a stray trailer wheel got embedded in there. It has been temporarily repaired.

A to Z bangerpedia

E is for Chevrolet Epica: The Epica was a reconstituted Daewoo saloon and obviously not remotely epic. Chevrolet kept it simple with a 2.0-litre petrol and a 2.0-litre diesel. There was a shedload of equipment for the lucky buyers who went for the LS or LT. Unfortunately, the air conditioning, suspension and sundries can fail due to mileage and neglect. It does at least have a decent 480-litre boot. There’s a handful on sale and it’s virtually impossible to pay more than £2000; £1000 gets you a 2008 diesel with 90,000 miles and a full service history.

Readers’ questions

Question: I’ve got rid of my daily driver so am faced with using my rust-prone weekend classic over winter. Should I worry? Brian Davies, Pembrokeshire

Answer: A dilemma indeed: you could spice up your daily commute no end but face a hefty welding bill down the line, courtesy of the UK’s wet and salty winter roads. If you really have no choice, it’s best to get the car up on a ramp, give it a thorough clean, apply a fresh coat of underseal and then invest in a waterproof cover for the office car park and allow an extra five minutes in the morning for demisting. Have you considered a temporary bargain banger, though? Just £600 gets you into a 2003 Ford Fiesta that you can shift in the spring. FP

Question: A garage replaced my rear brake pads. Soon after, my car rolled down a hill, damaging another. Is the garage liable? Fiona Eyres, via email