March 11, 2018

Tucson Tom's Auto repair Pages

I am back to working on my own cars again.

My current vehicles

Some prior vehicles

Repair shops in Tucson

For many years I have used Dan's Toy shop in Tucson for my Toyotas. The shop is two guys (Dan and Brian), so you know who is doing the work. This is unlike many other shops (even the dealers) that are always hiring new mechanics. The prices have always been fair and the work good.

However, Dan's only works on Toyotas. We also have a Honda that needs work, so this has us going elsewhere:

Places to get parts

I have used both Parts Geek and Rock Auto. The Parts Geek name is cute, but I prefer Rock Auto. As an example, when ordering oxygen sensors for my sons Honda Prelude, the Parts Geek site was confusing, and I ended up needlessly ordering a universal sensor. The Rock Auto website made it clear that the upstream and downstream sensor were identical (whereas the geek told me I was ordering two upstream sensors after I had clicked on separate links to order an upstream and a downstream.)

A tip I have been given also is to check Amazon if you have a part number and many times you can find an even better price.

I still use Autozone or O'Reillys for some things, such as when a heavy core needs to be returned.

This and that


You can buy a tube of this black stuff at the Toyota dealer to do repairs by the book. FIPG stands for "form in place gasket". People say that Permatex 82180 Ultra Black is the same stuff (and at a comparable price). There are actually other varieties of FIPG for different applications (such as grey which used to be unobtainable and used inside engines in specific places).


Off road experts say that the most common causes of vehicle breakdowns are tires and batteries. Tires are simple. Buy good ones, replace them when you should (bald tires get way more flats). Consider carrying two spares and maybe even a repair kit and pump.

I recently needed to purchase a new battery. A regular "flooded" battery was $200 at both Autozone and at Interstate. Interstate offered an AGM battery for $260 and that is what I bought. As I read about these, it is claimed that they can last up to 10 years (I typically get about 5 years out of a regular battery). If that is true, the dollars/year battery expense will be less with the AGM. We will see. The battery was installed in my Tacoma in May of 2023.

Have any comments? Questions? Drop me a line!

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