Q: I put a new set of Michelin Primacy Tour A/S 235/55 tires on my 2017 GMC Acadia 7,000 miles ago. They are riding really hard. They're supposed to be quiet and smooth riding. Can these tires get hard?
A: No, new tires don't get hard. Be sure they are inflated to the pressures found on the car's door. Some tire techs mistakenly inflate the tires to the maximum pressure figure molded into the tire's sidewall.
Q: My 2008 BMW 328 with a six-cylinder engine and 82,000 miles runs beautifully. But once the temperature gauge reaches 180 degrees Fahrenheit, the electric cooling fan comes on full and stays on, even in cold weather. When I park, it takes 30 seconds for the fan to wind down from its stratospheric RPM. Is this normal?
A: Yes, it is normal. The engine is happiest when running at the designed running temperature. In your BMW's case, that is about 200 degrees — even in cold weather.
Q: We have a 2013 Ford C-Max and a 2020 Ford Fusion. We usually burn 87-octane gas containing 10% ethanol. Lately I'm seeing 88-octane unleaded with 15% ethanol. I know we shouldn't use E-85, but I'm wondering if we could use the 88-octane with more ethanol.
A: As of the 2013 model year, Ford vehicles can use E15 gasoline, while prior model years are limited to E10. To see fuel requirements specific to your vehicle, check your owner's manual. By the way, E15 has 85% gasoline, the opposite of E85, which has 15% gasoline.
Q: I have a 2012 Hyundai Elantra with 87,000 miles, and the idle is sometimes a bit shaky. The Hyundai dealer told me to use fuel system cleaner or super unleaded, but it hasn't helped.
A: After a decade of driving, the idle air control valve might be getting dirty. When that happens, idle is often uneven, especially on a cold engine. A thorough throttle body cleaning might be all you need.
Seeing the light
Q: I've had an intermittent problem with my dome and other lights on my 2011 Toyota Avalon. The 7.5 amp fuse keeps blowing. For a while I was able to just replace the fuse, and everything would work for several months. Recently the fuse is blowing after a day or less. The Toyota dealer replaced the front ceiling console that has the door rocker switch and map lights. This was costly and, unfortunately, did no good. Do you have any ideas?
A: I am not sure whether there is a short circuit somewhere or if there is power surge when the lights come on. Try installing a 7.5 amp slow-blow fuse.
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 email@example.com.