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Q: My husband believes that we should plug in our hybrid every time we drive, even if we have used only a few miles of the electric capabilities. I prefer to use up most of the electrical capacity before recharging it. With a full charge, we usually start out with 45-47 miles of electric. Which approach is better for the life of the battery?

A: There isn't much reason to discharge the battery to nearly dead. Charging the car every night lets you awaken to a vehicle that is ready to go. My choice? Get in the habit of nightly charging.

Old spare still good

Q: I purchased a 2005 Lexus RX330 new. I have replaced the tires a couple of times. The car came with a full-size spare tire, which is stored underneath the vehicle below the rear compartment. I have never used the spare tire, but each year I clean it and fill it with the prescribed amount of air pressure. Because the tire is 19 years old, is it still safe to rely on it?

A: Yes, you can use the spare tire — sparingly. I would avoid highways. But your full-size spare should get you safely to a service shop.

Fob is AWOL

Q: I misplaced a key fob to my 2021 Acura RDX. Because I could still start the car without the other fob near it, I figured the missing fob was somewhere in the car. I looked multiple times, my husband looked, my son looked. Nothing. A mechanic pulled the seats and console, took up the carpet, searched the engine and trunk. Nothing. I can still lock the car with the other key fob, so I don't feel it is at risk of theft. But I still wonder, how do I find it?

A: This would be easy if you had attached an AirTag or Tile to the fob, but there is no other app that can help. I can suggest one more place to look. As odd as it may seem, I have found lots of stuff that had fallen behind the dash. There is gap between the windshield and dashboard. You'll need a good flashlight and small hands.

Bob Weber is a writer, mechanic and ASE-certified Master Automobile Technician. His writing has appeared in automotive trade publications, Consumer Guide and Consumers Digest. Send automotive questions along with name and town to